With the band being idle for a few years and original bass player Kim Deal leaving, you could have been forgiven for thinking that Pixies would be no more. However, just a week after Deal’s departure, the quartet announced a new single “Bagboy” and European tour. This tour included a stop at London’s Hammersmith Apollo, where their new line up included The Muffs’ Kim Shattuck replacing the other Kim on bass.
Opening with previous favourites “Bone Machine” and “Gouge Away,“ products of the quiet/loud fusion that made Pixies a huge influence on bands from the early 90s to today, revved the crowd up, before they enforced a spate of newer songs such as “Magdalena 318” and the aforementioned “Bagboy,” before an atmospheric cover of The Jesus and Mary Chain’s “Head On”.
If this was all about showcasing the new Pixies onto the crowd, then it was the old material that resonated most of the audience, with “Velouria”, “Hey” and “Monkey Goes to Heaven” drawing large crowd interaction. A cover of Neil Young’s “Winterlong,“ whilst apt given the weather, was mostly lost on the crowd, before Black Francis kept hold of his acoustic guitar, to unleash “Here Comes Your Man,“ drawing the biggest sing-along of the night, until “Where is My Mind?” closed out the set.
The Boston quartet returned after the encore with “Caribou”, “Wave of Mutilation” and “Planet of Sound”, which was interrupted by the lights being turned on, a signal that the show was almost over.
While Pixies may have been keen to showcase what is a indeed a new era for the band, their long lasting legacy is still evident enough to see thousands still lusting to hear their songs from over 20 years ago.